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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Business is also feeling the bite from the Texas winter storm, with a number of chipmakers forced to suspend production.

Why it matters: Even a brief shutdown of chip production in Texas could exacerbate the global chip shortage that's already reducing production of everything from cars to computers.

Driving the news:

  • Samsung Semiconductor said it has "gradually halted its operations" in Austin after being ordered to do so by local power utilities.
  • NXP Semiconductor, which makes chips for cars, among other uses, has also halted production at two Austin-area plants at the insistence of local utilities.

What they're saying: Once power comes back, Samsung plans to resume production immediately, while NXP will do an impact assessment and determine when it can come fully back online, company representatives told Axios.

Meanwhile: The chip industry has been pushing Congress to fully fund federal investment in the U.S. chip industry that recent defense legislation authorized.

  • A variety of business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and auto and medical device trade associations, are signing onto a letter being sent today to President Biden to back this federal investment.
  • The U.S. once accounted for 37% of global chip production but has seen its share fall to 12% as of last year.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Texas governor calls for emergency probe into state's power grid

Pike Electric service trucks in Fort Worth, Texas on Feb. 16. Photo: Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) called for an investigation into the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) on Tuesday, in the wake of a statewide power outage that has affected millions during a historic winter storm.

Why it matters: Over 3 million customers in Texas are still without power, as more freezing rain, sleet, and snow is forecast for western Texas until 9 p.m. CST, per the National Weather Service.

In photos: Winter emergency in Texas

A line outside a Fiesta Mart grocery store in Houston, Texas, Feb. 17. Texans have been running out of food and other supplies, and the cold weather has "wiped out" the state's citrus and vegetable crops, the Texas Tribune reports. Photo: Thomas Shea/AFP via Getty Images

Millions of Americans are still without power during the winter weather emergency that's sweeping the U.S. — including nearly 1.8 million Texans, per utility tracker poweroutage.us. Some have also lost water services.

The big picture: Texas has been particularly badly hit by the deadly storm, with infrastructure damaged and pipes frozen. Officials told some 7 million Texans Wednesday to boil tap water before drinking it.

14 mins ago - Health

Health care in the New Washington

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

As America emerges from the pandemic, here's a special Axios AM Deep Dive on the Biden administration's health care agenda.